Cryptocurrencies remain relatively unappealing to mainstream consumers and have for some time. The lack of a convenient cryptocurrency user experience, combined with inadequate security measures, is holding back mass adoption at this stage.
Cryptocurrency Isn’t for Everyone
Getting people excited about Bitcoin is a big challenge. This issue is only compounded when it comes to alternative currencies and digital tokens. There are many different reasons as to why the average person on the street will not care about cryptocurrency. It would appear the lack of convenience is still a pretty significant problem at this stage.
Compared to some other mainstream services, cryptocurrencies have a lot of work to do. Although comparing current streaming services to Bitcoin makes little sense on paper, there are some parallels to be drawn regardless. The main reason why Netflix is so popular is that of its convenient user interface. There is no “thinking” involved in the process as users can sit back and relax as they navigate through the platform.
With cryptocurrency, the situation is very different. Any application or service associated with this industry isn’t novice-friendly. All companies assume consumers have a basic understanding of how cryptocurrency works and what it can be used for. In reality, there is a big lack of education to contend with. Current cryptocurrency exchanges and applications tend to ignore this lack of education, thus making the situation worse by putting too high of an expectation upon their customers’ experience and understanding.
Exchanges Need to Lead by Example
The vast majority of consumers will be introduced to cryptocurrency through exchange platforms. Unfortunately, it is these exchanges which also pose the biggest user experience problems to date. Every individual user has different expectations as to how such platforms should work and behave. Meeting people’s expectations in this regard will always be challenging first and foremost.
Offering simplicity and security into one package is something exchanges can work on. One has to keep in mind how cryptocurrency is still a relatively new industry in this regard. As such, there is a steep learning curve in terms of simplicity. Especially with the ongoing regulatory requirements for exchanges globally, offering a simple interface isn’t straightforward. KYC and AML procedures need to be adhered to at all times. The problem is that exchanges are new to this game and often lack the knowledge, not to mention manpower, to solve such problems by getting ahead of them. Institutional financial firms have had decades to refine such procedures while cryptocurrency exchanges are trying to learn on the fly.
One option worth exploring is implementing security in a different manner. Users demand convenience, and two-factor authentication doesn’t help matters much in this regard. Cryptocurrency platforms need to find ways to enhance their own security, rather than have users implement such measures. It will require a major overhaul of the current exchange “experience” to make that happen. As Pavel Matveev, co-founder of cryptocurrency wallet provider Wirex, says:
As with any new technology, it is vital that the user experience facilitates adoption. Users are already on a steep learning curve when they first decide to engage with cryptocurrency and a bad user experience can put them off for months or give them a negative perception of a brand. Getting the user experience right should be a key focus of all service providers.
How do you think exchanges should increase the user experience of their platforms? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.